I am a lifelong Houstonian and mother of two in relatively good health. After Harvey, however, I began to cough a lot. My doctor told me I had severe bronchitis. It was so bad that I had to go through two rounds of antibiotics to get rid of it.
It seems to me that the air pollution after the storm had something to do with my respiratory problems. Oil refineries and chemical plants released extra pollution into the air because of the storm, and the flooding led to mold and overgrowth of plants. About one-third of our neighborhood inside the North Loop flooded.
My husband and sons have not had any health issues even despite spending many hours helping our neighbors clean up after the storm. Maybe my breathing problems are an “age” thing, or maybe my body is reacting differently to everything in the air. I do know that I am not the only one who with these type of health issues after the storm. We have a civic responsibility to address air quality issues in our city. We should come together and do something about all the people who are getting sick. We all deserve to be able breath clean air and be healthy.